The 33 will be in theaters November 13th!
Antonio Banderas stars in The 33 as Mario “Super Mario” Sepúlveda who is appointed leader of the miners, dividing the food in rations and stopping the outbursts of violence or despair.
The 33 follows the story of the gold mine collapse in Chile on Aug. 5,2010, trapping 33 men underground. The miners begin an extraordinary quest to survive with a limited food and water supply. With family, friends and the rest of the world watching it becomes a race against time and a test of the human spirit.
Directed by Patricia Riggen, the film boasts a star-studded cast including Rodrigo Santoro, Cote de Pablo, Juliette Binoche, Lou Diamond Phillips and many more. We attended a press conference for the film. Check out a few highlights below:
Antonio, can you talk a little bit about why this role is so important to you and what you think this movie says about not giving up and always having hope in life?
Antonio Banderas: To me the key moment and how I got attached to this story was with the note “We are alive”. I remember watching Mario “Super Mario” Sepúlveda coming out on live television and thinking there are many people right now, all around the world feeling what I am feeling. The hug of your sister, the look of your mother or your daughter, the food. Something as simple as an empanada becomes unbelievably important. It reminds all of us outside of the mine that we are involved in this crazy world. I believe that’s the lesson you get out of this movie, you see these guys fighting so strongly not only them but their families too. After watching the movie I realized how symbolic it was, you have this masculine, testosterone, dark side of the movie down there in the cave. Then you have this beautiful light sunny female world outside, both of them fighting to find each other.
It was in fact two different movies, you had down below and up above. So was that a challenge?
Patricia Riggen: We shot the whole underground inside the mine in Columbia. Then we shot the exterior in the desert of Chile just a few minutes away from the place where it really took place. It was like making two movies because the cast was different, the men were below and the women and the rescuers were above they only see each other day 1and day 69 — two different crews, two different countries. Some people tell me how great the sets were. I always tell them there were no sets in this entire movie, we shot the whole movie inside a real mine. We walked 35 times, 35 days into a mine, 14 hours a day, 6 days a week with all these men. Working under very tough conditions of danger, of bad air, no food, no bathrooms, no nothing down there. It is the real thing.
Which scene was the toughest scene to shoot?
Antonio Banderas: The toughest scene was the scene where he [Sepúlveda] apologized to the group, it was very delicate. We shot it twice, two different times … Either it’ll be too much or too little and that was the scene that was more complicated.
Did they tell you something that really informed your role? Something that they said about their experience?
Lou Diamond Phillips: For me it’s interesting because I’m an American and I don’t speak Spanish. I’m the only person in the entire cast and crew that doesn’t speak Spanish. So Patricia had to repeat everything [ha ha]. I spoke to Luis “Don Lucho” Urzúa through a translator and I found out a few things between the lines about his family, about his devout Catholic faith. The thing I received the most from Don Lucho was how he carried himself, just spending time and watching him it felt like he had the weight of the world on his shoulders. He spent his entire life in the mines, started out as a miner as a teenager. This was his life, this was his passion, this was his pride so you can understand how devastating it was, how irresponsible and guilty he was when the collapse happened and just seeing his quiet dignity.